Monday, July 04, 2005

The hands of Florence

Florence is overrun with hordes of well-scrubbed and innocent-looking American teanagers, filing dutifully along behind their high school European history teachers who are universally holding umbrellas aloft as if to ward off rain. Between the heat, the crowds and the limited attention span of our children, we were only able to sample a tiny part of Florence. We did, however, make an extensive sampling of local gelato.

Our favorite spot was looking at the statues in Palazzo Vecchio. An extraordinary story is told by the hands of the heros assembled there – David, with the hands of the Creator, Hercules, with his killing hands, and Menelaus (the least heroic of the bunch), holding in his hands the dying Patroclus, which to him meant victory in the Trojan War, because he would use the corpse to lure Achilles back into the fight.

My dream is to come back to Florence on a rainy day in February sans kids when you can have the place to yourself.